The imposing facade of the Hôtel de Ville, the City Hall of Paris, is familiar from countless tourist photos and news reports. Here are some of the details that are easy to overlook.
The inscription above the central entrance door reads ‘In this place on September 4th 1870 the people of Paris proclaimed the Republic’.
A glimpse of the inner courtyard through a wrought iron gate and elaborate base for a lamppost
Quite a few of the ‘gold’ flowers are missing – it’s easy to see why
The modest door of the central post office at the north end of the building.
The four bronze boys used to support a lamppost and the bronze artichokes?
Art deco railings on an exit from Hôtel de Ville metro
One of the four lions on guard by the east entrances.
Etienne Marcel established the Hôtel de Ville on this site in 1357. His equestrian statue stands on a high plinth overlooking the river Seine.
Gate to the garden – originally the mayor’s private garden, now used by the staff creche in the week and open to the public at weekends.
The first Hôtel de Ville was built on this site in 1357. The medieval building, modified and extended over the centuries, was the focal point of many of the major events in French history, up until 1871 when it was burnt down in a fire started by a group of communards. The Hôtel de Ville was rebuilt between 1874 and 1882 by architects Théodore Ballu and Edouard Deperthe in a neo-renaissance style inspired by the original building.
Click on any photo to view the gallery.
This post is linked to Thursday Doors, a collection of ordinary and extraordinary doors around the world.